WASHINGTON, D.C. — House Republican Whip Steve Scalise (R-La.) joined Republican Leader Kevin McCarthy (R-Calif.), Republican Conference Chair Elise Stefanik (R-N.Y.), Republican Leader of the House Foreign Affairs Committee Michael McCaul (R-Texas), Republican Leader of the House Committee on Oversight and Reform Committee James Comer (R-Ky.), Congressman Brett Guthrie (R-Ky.), and Congressman Dan Crenshaw (R-Texas) to call on Speaker Pelosi to direct her committee chairs to join House Republicans in investigating the origins of COVID-19. As the Ranking Member on the Select Subcommittee on the Coronavirus Crisis, Whip Scalise announced that Republicans will hold their own hearing to probe the origins of COVID-19, since Democrats continue to refuse to hold a full committee hearing on the issue. Whip Scalise blasted Speaker Pelosi’s failure to work in a bipartisan way to investigate claims that the pandemic started in a Chinese lab and her refusal to hold the Chinese Communist Party (CCP) accountable for the deaths of millions of people across the globe.
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On the need for Congress to investigate COVID-19’s origin:
“We need to hold China accountable. Congress needs to dive into — and thoroughly investigate — the origins of COVID-19. House Republicans have been calling on Speaker Pelosi to do this for more than a year now. And that was long before [there was] mounting evidence [that came out.] In fact, this virus may have started in the Wuhan lab.
“There should be hearings right now. All the committees of jurisdiction should be having hearings into the origin of COVID-19. Yet, for some mysterious reason, Speaker Pelosi continues to refuse to hold those hearings to hold China accountable.”
On Speaker Pelosi’s refusal to work with House Republicans and investigate the origin of COVID-19:
“Why would Speaker Pelosi want to cover up for China’s role in the origin of this virus? Especially when every day that goes by makes it harder and harder to get all of the facts that may be available. We know that there are some American scientists who were in communication with the scientists in that Wuhan lab. Let’s get all of that information. Let’s get the facts on the table. Let’s have real transparency so that we can ultimately get to accountability because we’ve seen the devastation in America with hundreds of thousands of lives lost.
“We’ve seen, globally, millions of deaths. We’ve seen the devastation it’s had on our economy. We had Federal Reserve Chairman Powell yesterday, before the Select Subcommittee on [the] Coronavirus [Crisis], and talked about the devastating impact it’s had on our nation.
“Yet, Speaker Pelosi refuses to have an investigation into the origin of this virus [for] over a year after the pandemic was declared, months after emails have now surfaced that show communications between top scientists that this may, in fact, have started in the Wuhan lab.”
On Republican efforts to uncover the truth about COVID-19:
“So House Republicans are not going to sit idly and wait as we’ve continued to demand [for] Speaker Pelosi to have formal hearings in the committees of jurisdiction. We’ve just announced that [the] Select Subcommittee on [the] Coronavirus [Crisis] Republicans will hold a hearing next week into the origins of COVID-19.
“We’ve already invited a number of top scientists. Some have accepted. I hope all ultimately come and accept. We’re also going to have some of our colleagues who have been investigating different aspects of the origin. It’s long past time for Congress to thoroughly investigate the origins of COVID-19.”
On the need to hold the Chinese Communist Party accountable:
“It’s taken such a tough toll on America and the world, but there [are] still serious questions that linger that Congress needs to answer. Congress should be holding these hearings. Because Speaker Pelosi refuses to hold China accountable, we’re stepping up, and we’re going to do it ourselves, but we’re still going to call on her to bring all of Congress together to do this. There’s no reason that she shouldn’t, and she should be asked that question every day until she finally agrees to work with us on a bipartisan basis and hold China accountable and look into the origins of COVID-19.”